Hibs boss runs rule over trialists Pattison and Kujabi

Pat Fenlon has sympathy for Rangers' woes. Picture: SNS
Pat Fenlon has sympathy for Rangers' woes. Picture: SNS
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Hibs boss Pat Fenlon was today casting his eye over South African internationalist Matthew Pattison and Gambian cap Pa Saikou Kujabi as he weighs up last-ditch bids to strengthen his squad with the transfer window slamming shut tomorrow.

Midfielder Pattison and Defender Kujabi were due to take part in a closed doors match against Carlisle United, the latest trialists to be given the chance to win an Easter Road contract. As the Evening News disclosed, Kujabi impressed in a similar game against Partick Thistle last week and has remained training with Fenlon’s squad at East Mains since and has now been joined by 25-year-old Johannesburg-born Pattison in the Capital.

The former Newcastle United and Norwich City player had a trial with English Championship outfit Leeds United last week as he bids to win a return to the United Kingdom following a spell with Mamelodi Sundowns in his homeland. Pattison’s agent Paul Mitchell said: “He’s going there to have a look around. We should know more by then, but it’s a good chance for Matthew to get a move back to the UK.”

Following Saturday’s 4-0 hammering by Rangers Fenlon, who has already added Eoin Doyle, George Francomb, James McPake and Tom Soares to his squad while releasing Victor Palsson, Junior Agogo and Matt Thornhill, revealed he was looking for further recruits. Admitting more woeful defending had again been Hibs’ downfall he said: “We are looking to bring in another couple of players, one of them will be a defender hopefully.”

Meanwhile, Fenlon has defended on-loan Coventry City stopper McPake who was sent off on his debut at Ibrox.

Having picked up an early booking for impeding Rangers star Sone Aluko, the former Livingston star, who had been made captain, was booked again following a clash with Maurice Edu.

Fenlon, though, insisted referee Charlie Richmond called it wrong. He said: “I thought at the time it was a bit harsh and having looked again it was not a yellow card.

“McPake has just stood his ground and the Rangers player has run straight into him. It wasn’t going to make a hell of a difference to the result, but, again, it’s another decision that’s gone against us.”

However, Hibs will be unable to appeal meaning McPake will sit out the crucial SPL clash with Aberdeen a week on Saturday, a match fellow defender Paul Hanlon will also miss through suspension.